NHL’s First Round Heating Up - Who’s Going 7?

5/9/13 in NHL   |   Andrew_Ericksen   |   230 respect

May 4, 2013; Detroit, MI, USA; Anaheim Ducks right wing Corey Perry (10) defenseman Francois Beauchemin (23) celebrate after goal scored by center Nick Bonino (13) in the second period in game three of the first round of the 2013 Stanley Cup playoffs at Joe Louis Arena. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY SportsWith 3 overtime games last night, 2 series headed into game 6 and another 2 series all knotted up, the first round of the NHL Playoffs certainly hasn’t disappointed.  But what’s on tap next?  Here’s a look at where the 7 remaining series stand, and where I believe they’re headed…
 
WESTERN CONFERENCE
 
Chicago Blackhawks lead Minnesota Wild 3-1
 
The Wild have put up a good fight, sending half of the first 4 games into extra minutes so far, but Chicago goaltender Corey Crawford and the Chicago defense tightened up in game 4 to take a solid hold of the series, putting them in position to close things out at home.
 
Prediction: Blackhawks in 5
 
Anaheim Ducks lead Detroit Red Wings 3-2
 
After the third overtime game of the series, the Ducks bring a 3-2 lead back to Detroit.  Expect the Wings to win on their home ice, but the Ducks have proven to have the most depth so far this series, really taking advantage of some defensive miscues from Detroit, so in a bang-bang series, I think the Ducks eek it out.
 
Prediction: Ducks in 7
 
Los Angeles Kings lead St. Louis Blues 3-2
 
This series takes the honors for most exciting in the West so far - barely beating out Ducks/Wings - as all 5 games have been decided by a single goal.  The series has been filled with late game drama and now the Kings take their first series lead back home, looking to close things out in the Staples Center.  The series seems to be tilting in the Kings favor, but don’t write off the Blues quite yet!
 
Prediction: Kings in 7
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5/10/13   |   ML31   |   3671 respect

If the Kings and Ducks advance I believe it will be the first time ever all 3 California teams advance to the 2nd round...